Garden in a Bag!

garden in a bag!

The easiest, fastest way to garden? Directly transplant into a potting soil bag. Low cost and minimal effort for small spaces.

what if i only have a small space to garden?

So you want to garden, but only have a small balcony porch? Don't want to purchase a heavy container? Want easy clear up? Don't want to dig a garden bed in your rental yard?

No problem. You can plant directly in a soil bag!

Step 1: collect supplies

  • One 20L bag of potting soil or indoor grow mix 
  • Scissors 
  • Plants (vegetables, herbs, and/or seeds)

Step 2: find a spot to grow

Find a sunny spot on a porch, balcony, or patch of grass. Once you cut open your bag, it will be difficult to move, so pick a spot that your small garden can stay for the life of the plants.

If you want to make sure you do not create a dirt stain on your porch, place your bag on top of a large plastic storage lid. The lid will protect the wood or stone beneath the bag.

Step 3: poke holes in the bottom of your bag

On the bottom of your bag, poke 3 rows of holes with the scissors. I had a total of about 12 holes. These will allow drainage of water through the bag.

Step 4: cut open the top of your bag

Flip you bag right side up. Leaving a 3in buffer on each side, carefully cut open the bag, revealing a 'window' of soil for planting.

Step 5: redistribute soil

Carefully push some soil into the covered edges of your garden bag, creating a denser edge for sturdy planting.


Plan out what you will plant and where. You can try anything you like and see what happens!

Some plants will grow better than others. Vegetables with shallow roots will do best, like tomatoes. Many herbs will also do well, for example thyme, parsley, and sage. French marigolds will grow beautifully. Avoid vegetables that grow under the soil like turnip, beets, and onions. 

I planted 2 soil bags: one with a transplanted tomato in the center and basil seeds in each corner, and other with an eggplant in the center, two peppers in diagonal opposite corners, and edge seeding with radishes. 

When the tomato starts to grow tall, instead of staking it from the bottom with a pole, I am going to gently tie it with a string to a wooden rail on my porch directly above the bag. The tomato plant will be supported from the top instead of the bottom.


The bag will retain a good amount of water. I water my garden bags 2 times a week, maybe 3 if it's really dry. If your garden bag is not covered by a porch, summer rains will generally keep it well watered.

Even if it's the middle of summer, it's not too late to plant a small soil bag garden! For your first one, try transplanting herbs to have ready to add to your home cooking.

1 comment

  • Sarah

    What I great idea! I have a tiny porch on a rental unit. Right now I have an elevated bed but am always trying to figure out good ways to add more plants! This is just the ticket!

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